If you arrived here then you most likely purchased our Managed Server Backup or are intending to and you are wondering how does it actually work.
The backup service uses only open source software that is publicly available, requires SSH access to the remote host and works only with servers running Linux. The storage server runs docker containers that are completely separated one from another. The actual backup process is happening inside each docker container and is triggered using cron at the required time. Dirvish is used to run the backup process which is a set of perl scripts that make use of the popular rsync utility in order to allow easy configuration, rotation, expiration and retention of the backed up data. The data is categorized in folders with the name as the current date stamp. Rsync connects to the remote server via SSH in order to transfer the data. Only the first initial backup performs a full data transfer from your server, all next backups use hard links for files that did not change and only new or modified files get transferred over. In the end you get a full snapshot of your server which can be used to restore it to a previous state in case of a major outage.
Below is a short diagram that shows how it works:
Depending on what the remote server is running, folders and file excludes are added in order to avoid copying over system temporary files(/proc, /dev, /sys, /tmp, logs, etc). In case of database servers a script is setup to run daily and run dumps of all databases. The reason is that copying over binary database files can corrupt the data because it is in constant change while it is being copied. For control panels a script is setup that creates accounts' backups skipping the document root directory using the control panel backup script. These are useful to speed up restoring after a major server crash and complete reinstall. After the control panel is re-installed the restore will be done from those account backups first which will restore all the control panel settings and accounts. Then the home directories are synced from our backup server to copy over the files.
The backup service is fully managed which means that there's no need for you to restore files manually, you can just ask us to do it for you by opening a ticket. In addition to this SSH access is provided to your docker container which allows you to access the backups using a client like WinSCP.